Moscow restaurateur Kira Baybakova likes to think big, so when it came to her new restaurant, “The Y”, she secured not one, but two floors in a newly built residential building in central Moscow which she transformed into a multi-functional eatery seating 200 patrons and featuring 2 open kitchens, a private dining room, a café, a bar and a secret playroom, with the help of New York-based design studio Asthetíque who conjured up a sophisticated yet easy-going ambience where guests can enjoy a morning coffee, a casual lunch or a gourmet dinner.
Asthetíque’s approach is characterised by a subtle nostalgia, channelled through an elegant composition of arched forms and soft pastel colour that combine a 1970s aesthetic with an Art Deco graphic elegance.
The restaurant was explicitly conceived as a relaxed refuge from the hustle and bustle of contemporary Moscow, cinematically designed as stage set of suave elegance and old-time charm. Inspired by acclaimed American film director Wes Anderson, whose distinct visual language has both aesthetic and narrative purposes, The Y’s highly stylized décor is characterised by a dreamy colour palette of pastels, the eclectic use of materials such as brass, velvet and polished timber that convey luxury and sophistication, and a predilection for symmetry and repetition. A plethora of striking details such as decorative wall panelling, graphically bold wainscoting, bespoke chandeliers and floral wallpaper differentiate each space.
The Y unfolds as a sequence of elegantly designed spaces; the intimate café on the ground floor gives way to the bright, easy-going dining hall where the vast open kitchen allows guests to have a taste of the restaurant’s inner workings. Upstairs, a mint-coloured eating area with its own open kitchen channels the ambience of a 1970s French bistro whereas the adjoining bar and dining area, steeped in dark wood-panelling and brass furnishings, convey the worldliness of an old school clubhouse. With a theatrically staged private dining room, a hidden playroom accessed through a secret door, and lavatories that feel more like upscale dressing rooms completing the venue’s facilities, The Y is an alluring, multifaceted destination that caters not just to millennials but to all those seeking a spot of refinement and poise amid the hectic pace of Moscow.